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Tales of Ancient Terra 1 - Temper

 
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Jimmy the Tulip
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Posts: 3793
Location: Auckland, NZ

PostPosted: Wed Jul 28, 2004 1:36 am    Post subject: Tales of Ancient Terra 1 - Temper Reply with quote

This series follows tales from the old times before mankind had expanded into the galaxy. Even in those times unexplained evil existed and had to be fought. This is one of those tales.

Prologue
He knelt in the alley, the persistent rain plastering his black hair to his head and face. Tears mingled with the rain as he cleaned the knife in the cascade from a broken downpipe. A noise behind him made him start and turn but the alley remained empty.
Rats, he thought, just rats. I did as you asked. The child is dead. I have freed another and saved us all for a little while longer.
You have done well, said the voice, the voice that only he could hear. So strong and powerful and full of compassion. But there are others to be freed and you have gained us only a little time. But rest for now. You have done enough for tonight.
He stood then, tall and lean, and what little light that filtered into the alley glittered from the crucifix around his throat. Tucking the knife into his belt and covering the handle with his coat he turned and made his way home. Behind him the blood of the child was washed away by the falling rain.

Chapter 1
The early morning rain spattered the news crew and other reporters as they milled around the outskirts of the area marked off by police emergency tape. Every now and then an officer would come forward to firmly remind people that this was a crime scene and could they all move back. About thirty feet away a small object lay on the ground covered from the light rain by a water proof blanket.
Inspector Michael Sullivan got out of his unmarked cruiser and made his way around the crowd. His partner ran to catch up as he strode toward the scene. One of the officers, seeing them approach walked over and lifted the police tape, silently welcoming them through.
“So we got ourselves another kid, huh?” asked Sullivans partner as he struggled to keep up. Inspector Sullivan’s six foot four height gave him a fair advantage in pace over his own five foot nine frame.
The officer looked to Inspector Sullivan as if asking permission to divulge sensitive information to this unknown man.
“It’s ok, Vic. This is Detective Philip Hartnell. He’s just been assigned to us from 14th precinct.”
The officer visibly relaxed. “Yeah, second kid this week. The MO matches another four killings, too. Three adults, a man and two women, and another child. They all turned up last week.”
Phil grimaced. “All the same. Are you sure?”
Vic looked at Phil. “We do know how to do our jobs here, you know.” Vic sighed, “I’m sorry. This whole thing is getting to me. All the victims have been the same. Multiple stab wounds to the chest and abdomen with a cross painted on the forehead in blood. Same thing every time.”
“And this time?”
“Yeah, exactly the same, like it’s some kind of ritual.“ Vic insisted as they drew up to the covered body. Vic pulled back the tarp. “Of course this time the rain has washed away the cross.”
Phil knelt down and examined the body. He pulled a small Dictaphone from his pocket and pressed record. “The victim is a caucasian male child, approximately 9 years old. Multiple stab wound to the chest and abdomen. The wounds look to be about an inch wide. Victim is fully clothed and otherwise unmarked. No evidence of struggling. Presume he was either taken by surprise or was attacked by someone he trusted. Usual blood cross on the forehead is missing though it is safe to assume the rain has washed it clean.”
Phil stood and stepped aside as he waved a pair of men through to remove the body. While he waited Phil walked over to nearby tree to inspect it.
“Sullivan, there’s something here.”
Michael walked over quickly and looked at the tree. He saw marks against the bark like someone had hacked at the tree with a knife. “Nice spotting, Phil. Looks like our perp got a little frustrated and took it out on the tree. Wonder what he was so mad about.”
“Guilt? Who knows? I’ll get forensics to do their work here and see if they come up with anything useful. Looks like we’ve still got a lot of work to do.” Phil turned and started walking towards their car.
Michael turned to Vic. “You know the routine Vic. Nobody gets close to this tree till forensics have checked it over.”
Vic nodded once. “Got it. I’ll see you later.”
The two detectives had to work their way around the bustling crowd of reporters to get back to their car. Phil cast a disgusted look at them as they walked past.
“You’d think they’d have better things to do than prey on corpse stories, especially with the Mars landing. Now I hear they’ve started drilling up there.”
Michael looked to Phil with surprise. “They’re drilling already?”
Phil rolled his eyes. “Geez, Mike. Don’t you watch the news? 9:40pm last night standard time they started drilling to get deep soil samples. I tell you, this is the start of something big.”
Michael shook his head in disbelief as they got into their car. It was going to be a long day.
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Jimmy the Tulip
Administrator & Lead Betatester
Administrator & Lead Betatester


Joined: 11 Aug 2003
Posts: 3793
Location: Auckland, NZ

PostPosted: Tue Sep 21, 2004 1:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Chapter 2

That night the sky was cloudy but, thankfully, the rain had stopped falling.
He sat behind his desk and slid open the top drawer. Inside, resting on a few papers lay the knife. The silver handle had been cast in the shape of Jesus on the cross, the legs extending down the hilt, His head resting on the silver blade itself. He was about to pick it up when there came a knock on his door.
“Enter,” he called as he quietly slid the drawer shut.
A young man wearing a priests collar opened the door just enough to poke his head through. “Sorry to disturb you, Father Morrow. I just wanted to let you know that I’ve finished and am going to leave now.”
Father Morrow smiled warmly but his eyes held a haunted look. “Thank you, David, and please, call me Jacob. There is no need for formality here.”
“Thank you, Jacob. Have a good night.”
“Good night,” muttered Jacob as David closed the door behind him.
Alone at last, thought Jacob.
Not quite, replied the voice, but it’s as alone as you’ll ever be.
Jacob thought he caught a slight mocking tone to the voice. This was something he had never heard before. Must we do this again tonight? Can I not have one night of rest?
Rest? You want to rest? This time the tone was anger. Did I rest when I strove to cleanse you of your sins? When I was hung upon the cross do you believe I was resting? The anger in the voice was building. Jacob could almost feel it. You are weak, Jacob. I gave everything I had for you, for all of you and yet you can not do this one small thing for me?
Jacobs head dropped into his hands. He was so exhausted he nearly wept. But the voice would give him no respite. I’m sorry, I’m just so tired. I will do as you bid.
Jacob, I know the pain you feel, believe me. I would not ask these terrible things of you were it not so necessary. The voice was calm now, almost comforting. If we do not eradicate this evil then all the innocents will suffer. Thank you, Jacob. You will not suffer much longer, I promise.

Jacob stood, pretending to to look at something through the shop window as the woman walked towards him. Are you sure this is the one?
The voice was insistent. Yes, Jacob, she is the one. I sense it in her even now. It’s like a mosquito that you can not swipe away, buzzing around in her head. It has taken hold of her and if we do not free her now she will only suffer the more for it later.
Jacob sighed. The woman had walked past him and was moving away down the street. Jacob turned and made after her, calling to get her attention.
“Excuse me, Miss.” The woman stopped after seeing his collar.
She smiled as he approached. “Yes, Father?”
“I’m sorry if I alarmed you. I’m new to town and wondered if you could direct me to St Martins church?”
The woman nodded as she spoke. “Yes…yes I can. Let me take you there. It’s not far out of my way.”
“You are too kind, dear lady. Thank you.” This is getting too easy, Jacob though as the woman led him away. Far too easy.
But shouldn’t it be easy to lead people to salvation? The voice questioned. Of all people a priest should find it so.
The silent conversation was interrupted by the woman. “It’s quicker if we cut through the park.”
Jacob smiled and nodded and followed her into the lightly wooded park.
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